Aldridge Education


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Darwen Aldridge Enterprise Studio School

The Darwen Aldridge Enterprise Studio School (DAES) opened in September 2013, providing a new, exciting and professional way to learn for students in Lancashire.

The Studio provides young people aged 13-19 of all abilities with an education that focuses on professional learning, work experience, and life skills.

The school offers a balanced curriculum of GCSEs and post-16 qualifications, with a special focus on Creative Digital Media, Technical Digital Media and Care sector related subjects. These are delivered through real commercial business-based projects and linked to the world of work. In addition to their traditional learning, students also gain access to professional work placements which are related to their studies or career aspirations. They gain a head start into careers by studying for recognised professional qualifications and certificates while benefiting from learning in smaller classes. 

Proposals to open the school were officially approved by the Department for Education in July 2012. The Studio initially opened within the buildings of its sister school, Darwen Aldridge Community Academy (DACA), where it had its own dedicated learning space as well as access to all of DACA’s award winning facilities. In September 2014 the Studio moved to purpose designed new facilities in the former Model Lodging House on Police Street. The site underwent a £4.1m refurbishment and extension to transform the historic building into a state of the art 21st century school.

In April 2015 Ofsted rated DAES “Good”. The quality of teaching, the achievement of students, the performance of the sixth form, behaviour and safety of students, and leadership and management of the school all received a Good rating.

Visit the Studio's website 

August 2019 saw the Studio achieve a 100% pass rate at A-Level, with over half of passes being A*-B grades. 50% of Studio students received unconditional offers for university places. On average sixth form students achieved three quarters of a grade above their targets and the sixth form was number one in the borough for the progress of its students from GCSE to post-16 results.  

In May 2018 Colin Grand was appointed the Studio School’s new Principal.

Read more about Darwen Aldridge Enterprise Studio Principal Colin Grand

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